2 Things to Do with Cucumber Peels for Healthy Plants

Updated: Nov. 18, 2023

This plant care DIY is the perfect way to use cucumber peels.

Your leftover cucumber peels can be good for the kitchen compost—and for indoor plants. Even when you choose low-maintenance houseplants, pests can still find a way inside and take hold. To keep unwanted visitors out, use cucumber peels as a natural pest control agent. The bitter taste of the peels acts as a deterrent for mites, ants, moths and wasps. Many indoor gardeners place cucumber peels in the corners of the kitchen, on windowsills or in cabinets to combat a bug problem. You can also make cucumber water for plants to act as a helpful fertilizer.

Use Cucumber Peels to Get Rid of Mites

At a glance, a houseplant might appear parched with browning leaves. The leaves can start to yellow, wilt and drop off. Take a closer look at the plant—hold it up to the light and turn leaves over and look underneath and along stems. If you observe any wispy webbing and what appear to be tiny moving dots moving around the plant, it has mites.

Cucumbers can help to repel mites due to their cucurbitacins. Cucurbitacins are bitter-tasting compounds that deter insects.

You can directly place cucumber peels in the soil of the plant to keep insects away.

Tiny mites also prefer a dry environment. The best way to keep them off your plants is to create a more humid atmosphere for your plants. Misting them regularly can help. Use a cucumber water spray to keep mites out of your houseplants!

Make Cucumber Water for Plants

Mites do not like moisture. Keeping your plants hydrated with regular sprays of cucumber water will keep mites from moving in and damaging your plants. The compounds of the cucumber work to naturally repel mites, too. This TikTok from @creative_explained has a recipe for cucumber water that’s easy to make and can help keep your plants looking and feeling their best.

@creative_explained Cucumbers can be used for so many things! 🤩🥒 #cucumbers #lifehacks #plantsoftiktok #planttips #recycle #howto #diy ♬ original sound – Armen Adamjan

Save the peels from any variety of cucumber. Place the scraps in a clean glass jar, fill with water and cover with a lid. Let the peels soak for five days. Then strain the water and compost the peels. Fill a clean spray bottle with the cucumber water.

Use the cucumber water to mist your plants to keep mites from taking hold. Use a stronger spray to blast off any mites crawling on the leaves or stems of the plant. Be sure and spray the underside of leaves where mites hide.

This homemade cucumber spray is also rich in potassium and phosphorus which helps to promote healthy plant growth!